A dream of Ireland
I had a dream.....
...last night. A weird and wonderful dream about solving the financial crisis that has beset Ireland. We may not have much cash in these parts during this time of economic recession, but the one thing we have always had, and still do have, is a wealth of famous international Irish born pop stars.
Bob Geldof was there, in my dream. The man who had done so much in the past to help raise awareness of poverty throughout the world. And along side him was Bono, the voice of social conscience to a whole generation. They were sitting outside a cafe in Dublin, sipping cappuccinos, and discussing the bank bail-outs, and how we were going to have to look to Europe or America for support. Ironically, on the opposite corner of the street, Boyzone were busking to earn a few quid. I found myself seated at a table adjacent to Geldof and Bono, and eaves-dropping on there conversation.
(Geldof) Look, the feckin country is going down the feckin plughole, and what’s anyone doin' about it...nothing but talkin'.
(Bono) Yeh. That’s right. Talkin' and sayin' nuthin'... I need to make a speech, man... to the people and to the politicians.... I need to say something profound, man....
(Geldof ) No offence Bono... but all you ever do is make speeches....but it’s action we need, not words.
(Bono) Hey come on Bob.... my speeches are 'magnificent'..... look at Nelson Mandela. He loved me, man, coz i tell it like it is. Ask John Hume and David Trimble... I mean, I help those guys win the Nobel Peace prize.
(Geldof ) You’re not listening Bono... we need to make the government sit up and pay attention.....you can’t do that just by reciting a load of pseudo-intellectual clap-trap.
(Bono) Man, I hope you aren’t accusing me of being pseudo-intellectual... everything I say makes a difference.... I’m a political poet to a whole generation.....
(Geldof ) Yeh, whatever, Bono.... but what the people need now is money....’and I can see no reasons, coz there are no reasons’….why you couldn’t help out by paying taxes like everybody else in the country.
(Bono) Hey, I don’t deal in money, Bob.... I leave all that to my accountants.... I focus on making people feel good, by saying all the right things..... I’m like a guru man....
(Ronan Keating and Keith Duffy had given up their busking and had now crossed over to the cafe.)
(Ronan) Bob’s got a point though, Bono.... people are fed up with speeches and promises...
(Bono) Em.... pardon me, but who are you?
(Ronan) What do you mean, who am I? I’m Ronan Keating. One of the biggest names in Ireland.
(Bono) Oh yeh.... you’re with West Life or something....aren’t you?
(Ronan) Give me a break.... I’m with Boyzone.....
(Bono) Oh yeh, Boyzone. You guys were fun.... a decade ago.....
(Ronan) This isn’t about me or you, Bono, it’s about doing somethin’ positive for Ireland....
(Geldof ) Precisely Ronan.... and as major celebrities, we ought to lead the way in making people socially responsible.....awaken their social conscience...
(Bono) Yeh! Social conscience.... that’s a good theme man.... I’ll make a speech about social conscience...
(Keith) You just don’t get it, do you Bono? We’ve got to use our talents to get in touch with the people on the street.
(Bono) Uh... which street would that be, Keith? Coronation Street? Oh no, I forgot... they ditched you, didn’t they!
(Keith) Hey, you better not be making fun of me... I was very popular on Coronation street.
(Ronan) Don’t let him rattle you, Keith... he’s just being an asshole.
(Bono) You can’t call me an asshole, man, I’m an icon....
(Geldof ) Would ya shut the feck up about bein’ an icon..... this isn’t about any of us individually.... it’s about what we can do together to help to make Ireland a better place.
(Bono) Oh pardon me, Sir Bob..... don’t let an icon like me interrupt your train of thought!
(Geldof ) Look, we need to work together, not against each other.....
(Ronan) So what are you suggesting, Bob?
(Geldof) I’m suggesting a song for Ireland, like a statement of solidarity. All the big names in the music industry...and you guys.... all singing together to make the government take notice.
(Keith) Jaysus, that’s a great idea Bob.... kinda like Feed The World?
(Bono) Oh yeh man, and we’d have a Christmas number one. Good for my image. You can count on me, Bob. We could call it “Bono’s song for Ireland”...and just think of the rotalties!!
(Geldof) There’ll be no royalties, ya eejit.... it’ll all go to charity.
(Bono) Yeh.... I guess that would be ok too.... good for the image!
(Ronan) Well you can count us in, Bob. We’ve nothing better to do at the moment anyway.
(Geldof) Ok.... so let’s do it!
(Then suddenly my dream changed location, and I was in the crowd t the new Aviva stadium, and there in the middle of the pitch, on a specially constructed platform, surrounded by speakers, amplifiers and large screens, were the boys, with the Corrs, Enya, Sinead O'Connor, West Life and Daniel O'Donnell all in place as backing singers! And as I listened, they broke into song!)
“We Are The World”
(Geldof ) There comes a time, when we heed a certain call When we all must come together as one.
(Bono) We are in recession, ooh and it’s time to lend a hand,To life, the greatest gift of all.
(Boyzone) We can’t go on, pretending day by day, that Kenny someday soon will make a change. We are all a part of one great big family, And the truth, you know money is all we need.
(All) You can’t afford, to feed your children, You are the ones who struggle night and day, To make a living!. So we’d like to help you, in patronising tones. This song will make our conscience clear, and we’ll feel good!
(Bono) We’re singing this song, so you’ll know we really care, Though it won’t make much difference to you.
(Geldof) As history’s shown us, the banks are in control, And there’s pretty much feck all that we can do.
(All) But still we’ll sing, to you, our children, And we feel good about the ray of hope, that we are giving. We don’t need to do this, We’re comfortably well off, But it’s true it brightens up our day, to sing to you!
(Geldof) When you’re down and out, there seems no hope at all,
(Bono) We’ll always sing a song, to cheer you as you fall.
(All) Well well we realise, we can make the recession fun, When we sing together as one!
You can’t afford, to feed your children, You are the ones who struggle night and day, to make a living!. So we’d like to help you, in patronising tones, This song will make our conscience clear, and we’ll feel good!
(The others repeated the chorus, ad nauseum, as Bono launched into one of his famous speeches.)
Bono People of Ireland, we love you. And we’re here for you. Down with the government.... Use your social conscience.... Bring change through political action..... Don’t forget. We are the world.... and we deserve justice.... I love you, and you love me.... Don’t forget to buy my latest album.... because I love you!!!
(And then the whole stadium was singing along! As it all finished, the crowd faded away, and the boys were alone on-stage.)
(Bono) Ok, who’s for a pint?
(Ronan) I’m with you, Bono....
(Keith) Lead the way, Bono.... if you’re buyin’.
(Bono) We’ll go Dutch.... it’s the Irish way.
And then I woke up......